Counselling for Panic Attacks

A Panic Attack is very common, it is a distinct episode of anxiety, the onset of which is sudden, and the duration relatively short. During a panic attack symptoms of anxiety are severe, intense and overwhelming, so much so that many people end up in A&E fearing that they are having a heart attack. Repeated Panic Attacks, where an individual’s biggest fear is having another Panic Attack and where this fear is interfering with their ability to do everyday things, is called Panic Disorder. This page deals with Panic Disorder as this is a problem for which people need to seek help.

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Who Can Counselling for Panic Attacks Help?

Do you have an overwhelming fear of having a Panic Attack?
Do you worry about fainting or collapsing in public?
Do you worry that you are going to cause a scene as a result of feeling anxious?
Do you worry that you are going to go mad when you feel anxious?
Do you worry that you will suffocate or have a heart attack when you start to feel anxious?
Do you avoid situations that make you feel anxious or always make sure you have an exit strategy?

Do you experience 1 or more of the following physical symptoms:

  • Heart palpitations
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating/hotness
  • Dizziness/feeling faint
  • Nausea
  • Stomach ache
  • Pins and needles
  • Dry mouth
  • Insomnia

If you have answered ‘yes’ to one of more of these questions you may benefit from our counselling services for panic attack disorder.

What Is A Panic Attack / Panic Disorder?

Anne, Online Counselling

What Does Treatment for Panic Involve?

Step 1

One of our Therapists will meet with you to find out more about your panic attacks, the concerns that you have about them and their impact on your life, relationships, responsibilities and self-esteem. They will also ask you what you would like to achieve through your counselling and then use this information to tailor a therapy programme to help you cope.

Step 2

You will begin by learning about anxiety and panic attacks, why we have them and their effect on our mind and bodies. This knowledge will place you in the strongest position from which to resolve your symptoms.

Step 3

You will then work with your Therapist to identify the thoughts that are triggering your anxiety and where appropriate, develop alternative thoughts that are more accurate and helpful to replace them. Over time these will induce feelings of balance and calm.

Step 4

In preparation for step 5 your Therapist with teach you effective strategies to reduce your anxiety to a more manageable level.

Step 5

The next step will be to identify the things that you are doing which are keeping you stuck and preventing you from resolving your difficulties (e.g. avoiding situations). Your Therapist will then structure a programme that will enable you to gradually make changes here.

Step 6

You will then work with your Therapist to build up your self-esteem and confidence to speed your recovery and protect you against future relapse of symptoms.

Fees

Prices can be found on our Fees page. If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to call 0203 504 9300 or fill out a contact form.

Therapists

All of our Therapists offer Panic Attack counselling.

What causes Panic Attacks / Panic Disorder?

After experiencing an initial attack (usually triggered by high levels of stress), panic attacks will develop into a Panic Disorder if an individual becomes so fearful of experiencing another attack that they become hyper vigilant of physiological changes in their body, interpreting benign shifts (such as increased heart rate, shortness of breath, dizziness due to exercise, getting up to quickly, and drinking coffee) as signs of another attack.  The factors that place someone at risk of making these misinterpretations are a combination of catastrophic thinking patterns (a person tends to make the worst case scenario into the reality) and early experiences where they have learnt that they are at risk and ill-equipped to deal with that risk (for more information see our Anxiety Page).

What other treatments exist for Panic Attacks/Panic Disorder?

The government body NICE recommends the same treatment for Panic Disorder as for other types of Anxiety (see link to our Anxiety page), for example a course of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and/or medications – with the exception of the use of Benzodiazepines which should not be prescribed.

More Reading On This Subject

Should you wish to find out more about Panic, please check out this article on our blog section.

If your Panic Attacks are not as severe, please see our Anxiety page for more information.

Contact us to see how we can help: